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Carlo Ancelotti: "Benzema Will Start Tomorrow"

The Eyebrow sat down with the press for a chat the day before Real Madrid take on Sevilla in a midweek battle. Here's what was said.

David Ramos

  • In news that sure to make all of Real Madrid nation happy, the Red Beard, Xabi Alonso, should be able to see the pitch in limited minutes tomorrow. "Xabi is available, he trained with the team. Tomorrow he may start on the bench, I'll try and give him minutes. Xabi is a very, very important player to us" Ancelotti said. This is the first time this season that Carlo has had the entire squad available to him prior to a match.
  • Ancelotti also praised Illarramendi, the man some have pegged to be Xabi's replacement for the future, for his performance against Barcelona. He pointed out that the presence of Xabi will surely help Illarra improve, however; it is difficult to play them together in a 4-3-3.
  • Looking towards tomorrow, Carlo will start Karim Benzema at striker but did not say who would be playing behind him. He also stated that Isco can play tomorrow and that one of the CBs will rest. He did mention that Gareth Bale would be playing on the right side, his natural position. It's nice when players play in their natural positions, Carlo...
  • On the state of the club, Ancelotti chose to look at the positives from the Barca game and the season in general. "We are very close to achieving the Madrid I want, but I can't tell if it will be tomorrow or in a week. For the fans it is not yet clear how we try to play because we have not always played well. Criticism is normal." He also went on to state that the team needs to play a full 90 minutes with intensity, which he finds to be doable, and that they had control against Barca in the second half when they turned up the intensity.
  • On the league race and Dani Alves stating that Atletico is Barca's biggest competition, Carlo brushed them off and said that the club will try to use that as motivation as the season is long and they look to recover the six point deficit in front of them.
  • With the Ballon d'Or shortlist being released today and Cristiano Ronaldo being one of the members on that list, Carlo announced that Florentino Perez has made a strong move to back up Ronaldo's candidacy. "I know that the President has sent a letter to FIFA asking Blatter to rectify his lack of respect for Cristiano. I didn't speak to Cristiano about this. He trained as usual. It demonstrates his professionalism and seriousness" Ancelotti said. Big move from the club if this is true.
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